WCU Performance Programme 2014 focus

WCU Performance Programme 2014 focus

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Glasgow medal tally the focus behind
the Welsh Cycling Performance Programme

Three years out from the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, Welsh Cycling is on track to increasing Wales' medal tally with the launch of a new performance programme.

Headed up by Performance Manager, Matt Cosgrove, the aim is to develop a pool of talented Welsh riders that will be able to follow in the footsteps of Geraint Thomas and Becky James in becoming full-time, world class riders.

Former Institute Manager at Sport Wales, Cosgrove (pictured right) has worked with Welsh Cycling for the past 14 years and said:

"This is a great opportunity for me to bring my experience of working, not just with cycling, but with the performance programmes of a number of sports to create a system that should see sustained success for Welsh riders on the world stage.
We have the opportunity to help put Welsh Cycling on the podium and on the map - that's a hugely exciting prospect."

And Cosgrove will be supported in his quest for medals by Head Coach Darren Tudor.

A distinguished and respected coach, Tudor joins Welsh Cycling with six years experience of coaching the Great Britain U23 and junior teams and brings with him extensive knowledge of what is required to perform on the European and World stage.

Cosgrove explains;

"Darren has worked with some of Wales' most talented young riders during his time at British Cycling. Luke Rowe, Sam Harrison, Jon Mould and Owain Doull are just a few of the riders that have seen success under the watchful eye and guidance of our new Head Coach".

Head Coach, Darren Tudor (pictured right), said:

"Significant investment from Sport Wales will allow Matt and I to solely focus on developing and running the performance structure here at Welsh Cycling, which in turn will maximize the use of the Wales National Velodrome in helping to identify and nurture the next generation of top Welsh cyclists and by introducing world class coaching."

Cycling has rapidly propelled itself as one of GB's most successful sports with a proportion of those well established riders hailing from Wales. The programme will aim to follow on from that success by targeting riders aged 15-18 with the potential to either win a medal or contribute to a medal-winning performance at the Glasgow 2014 Games or to achieve selection into one of British Cycling's programmes.

Identified, talented riders are set to benefit from enhanced coaching, training and racing opportunities to give them the best possible shot at stepping onto the podium in Glasgow and beyond.

Just as importantly, senior riders who sit outside of the British Cycling system but who can play a role in Glasgow 2014 will also be supported.

Laura McAllister, Chair of Sport Wales said:

"Our ultimate aspiration is for Wales to not only excel at sport but to also be world renowned as a successful sporting nation. Cycling has a phenomenal track record of bringing home medals for Wales and for achieving at the highest level."

"We want a Wales where winning is expected and we need to ensure that we invest in those that demonstrate the biggest returns. There is such a depth of talent amongst the next generation of riders and that has secured cycling's position as a Sport Wales priority sport. We look forward to working with Matt and Darren to further improve the chances of seeing the Welsh jersey on the podium in Glasgow 2014."

Geraint Thomas MBE, Olympic gold medalist from Beijing 2008, has thrown his support behind the developments at Welsh Cycling and is excited about some of the future riders:

"There are some exciting young stars developing within Wales at the moment and putting a structure in place to develop that even further can only be a good thing. Amy Roberts, Elinor Barker and Dan Pearson are just a few of the riders that we should be keeping our eye on."

"Wales has been able to boast medal-winning performances in the past but having worked with both Matt and Darren before I know that they will do their best to take this to the next level and give cycling in the Wales the profile boost it deserves."

Photo © 2011 Bart Hazen

Elinor Barker, Amy Roberts and Dan Pearson are just a few of the young riders who will benefit from the Performance programme in the build up to the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

For more information contact Sarah Mogford at Sport Wales on 029 2033 8273 / sarah.mogford@sportwales.org.uk